On Wednesday, we went to Mererani to assist the teacher there, Fredson John, and to conduct studies with him. Allen Mkita was sick, so we enlisted the help of Mbise from Nkoaranga.
Mererani is about a 2 hour drive from Arusha along dusty roads and with the air-conditioner not working in the truck yet it was very dusty! We made it in good time though and met Fred (Fredson) at the marvellously named Kangaroo Hotel! I am sure it is the only kangaroo in Tanzania!
We shared some cokes and discussed the work before heading out of a study with the family of one of the members there.
That one church was not to be built on a mere man (as some say), but on the rock that is Jesus Christ, the Son of God. The many churches we see today have been built by men a long time after Christ built His church.“I also say to you that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build My church; and the gates of Hades will not overpower it." Matt. 16:18
We had a really good response with great questions following. You learn here very quickly that these people are very intelligent. They may not benefit from a great education, but they are plenty smart!
After this we went on to study with a sister who was having trouble with what the Bible teaches about singing in the assembly. Mike did an excellent job showing that the New Testament commands us to sing, and the instrument we are to use is our lips and heart.
We are no longer under the Old Covenant and its commands, but we are blessed with the New. There were several non-memebers present and the Q & A afterwards was again wonderful."speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody with your heart to the Lord;" Eph. 5:19
We had to leave early in the afternoon so as to get back to Arusha for Wednesday night services. On the way we stopped under a fig tree and a stream, for a picnic lunch. There were some herders there with their sheep, goats and cattle. They came on over to us and we started a conversation. After a bit we were teaching them the hymn, "Happy Day" in Swahili. It was a wonderful time. We ended with a prayer and headed for Arusha.
On Thursday we had arranged a study with Christopher's wife. Christopher is a faithful member at the Philips congregations and his wife is a member of a pentecostal church. We had another wonderful study and Mama Christopher told us she would come with her husband to worship in Sunday.
Then we went with Allen, who was feeling better and was translating for us, to a man he knew who worked close to the church building. This man, Anderson, is a carpenter and we had a great study with him and his work mates at their work place.
It is so good to be able to study with people almost anywhere and feel welcomed each time.
Keep reading for future exciting updates on this work here in Tanzania.